Coping with an early teen

Coping with an early teen

The gradual transition from cute gem to stroppy teenager is a difficult time for any parent, and may leave you stuck for ideas on how best to handle it. Here iCandy have listed some of the main things you can do when dealing with this hard period in life, and how best to make things easy for your early teen and you!

Be calm and consistent

Psychologists have found that a teenager’s brain deals with much more emotion than they do logic, due to the increased levels of hormones rushing through their body. This often confuses and frightens a teen. It’s important to understand this change and stay calm. Also be consistent, making sure you are always there for them so they know that they can rely on you whenever they need to.

Show them you care

Tantrums are a teenagers way of reaching out to their parents. They expect a reaction, which generally comprises of a continued argument. Try and make sure you are offering your time for them to voice any concerns they may have, before it leads to a heated debate. Don’t push it on them, reinforce them of your constant and caring presence so they can come to you when they feel the time is right. I would recommend picking them up from school, or dropping them off at their friend’s house, as this is the perfect time for you to talk.

You are a role model for your child – remember this!

No matter what a teenager tells you, or how many times the words “I hate you” come up, remember that inside they will always look up to you. Use this as a guideline for their upbringing. Make sure they don’t see you smoking, drinking, arguing etc., as this will reinforce them to think that this is acceptable behaviour.

Give responsibility but set ground rules

Your child is growing into an adult, therefore needs the responsibility to be able to learn how to live as one. Give them enough responsibility to feel respected, however, always set strict ground rules to follow, teaching them the discipline they will need later on in adult life.

Voice your concerns

As awkward as the “birds and the bees” conversation may be, it is much better to voice your opinion rather than letting them make mistakes they can’t undo. Try not to enforce rules upon them, but give information and guidance on whatever the topic may be.

Finally, always show them love, they need it!



  1. Janine C
    August 12, 2014 / 10:38 pm

    Empathy is a good tip, remember you were this age once! What would have worked for you? Try use that approach but with a sensible ‘adult’ approach added to it. They will thank you for it one day, just grin and bear it for now!

  2. jackie chapman
    August 12, 2014 / 10:51 pm

    I read a few years ago that the part of the brain that allows us to empathise does not develop fully until we are around 20 years old. So I will try to remember this when my 11 year old is a selfish teen! Great blog 🙂

  3. carol boffey
    August 13, 2014 / 9:51 am

    really good advice

  4. Annaloa Hilmarsdottir
    August 13, 2014 / 1:51 pm

    Thank you so much for the concise, invaluable and timely advice. It’s a great help with my 13 year old.

  5. August 13, 2014 / 10:58 pm

    and when they yell at you “I hate you” you calmly reply with “Right now I dont like your behaviour, but no matter what you do I will always love you” and I have to say my children as mature adults say that made a difference to them
    Elaine Livingstone recently posted…A photographic update of the twins.My Profile

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